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Benzylic C–H oxidations of dehydroabietic acid derivatives at positions 7 and 15

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Title: Benzylic C–H oxidations of dehydroabietic acid derivatives at positions 7 and 15
Author(s): Krogerus, Sara
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Science, Department of Chemistry
Discipline: Organic chemistry
Language: English
Acceptance year: 2016
Dehydroabietic acid is a natural diterpene readily available from disproportionated rosin. This natural product has attracted the interest of both the synthetic, medical and pharmacological communities due to the wide variety of important biological activities it exhibits. In search for potent pharmaceutical agents, numerous derivatives of dehydroabietic acid have been designed and synthesized accordingly. One key reaction in such syntheses is the benzylic oxidation of positions 7 and 15 in the dehydroabietane core. The oxidized derivatives act as key intermediates in the synthesis of both natural and unnatural dehydroabietanes and related compounds. In the literature part of this thesis, known methods for the benzylic C–H oxidation of dehydroabietanes are presented. In the majority of these methods noxious Cr(VI) compounds are required which produce large amounts of toxic waste. The growing concern on the environmental impact of chemicals has led to an increasing interest towards developing environmentally friendlier oxidation procedures, using cheap and readily available oxidants. Recently, much research has focused on the development of transition metal free approaches for benzylic C–H oxidation. The topic is also discussed in this thesis. In the experimental part transition metal free methods for the benzylic oxidation of dehydroabietic acid derivatives are investigated. An environmentally friendly procedure using sodium chlorite in the presence of aqueous tert-butyl hydroperoxide is described. This procedure resulted in the formation of several variously oxygenated dehydroabietic derivatives which were characterized by IR, NMR and HRMS spectrometry. A manuscript is being prepared based on some of the results presented in this thesis.

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